The Adventure Begins

Adapted repost from “The Adventure Begins” | Lydia Cook | ISA Veritas Chile Spring 2019

Buenas tardes amigos y familia! With only 5 days till I depart, I thought I’d hop on here and give you a quick little update on God’s immense grace in my life this week.

To those of you who have seen me this week, you’ve probably had the ‘pleasure’ of hearing about my slight meltdown in the middle of my hostel bed in Washington, DC. To those of you who are wondering what could have possibly gone wrong… here is the lowdown:

1) I drove in to Washington, DC like a champ with my granny, navigating construction and city roads like I wasn’t taught to drive in a small town. HA! Winning, am I right?

2) I accidentally booked a hostel for Granny and I to stay in, not paying a bit of attention to the fact that there was an added ‘s’ in the word hotel. (Note: This ended up being a blessing in disguise. We met a cool Brazilian guy, who has actually visited Viña y Valparaiso and had some awesome advice!)

3) We walk around for a few hours, taking in the sights, getting our exercise on.

4) *Here’s where it starts getting good.* I receive the long-awaited FINAL PACKET from my Program Manager.

5) I quickly realize that I have been placed in the w r o n g program. I try not to freak out and begin to sort things out.

6) I receive a phone call from my manager who graciously assists me… but also shares with me that my correct program will be $800 more than the previous. As I hold in tears I assure her that the added cost won’t be a problem.

7) Later that evening, after taking a nice walk to RiteAid pharmacy, seeing Donald Trumps silhouette during his presidential limo escort, and having a yummy vegan cupcake and coffee with my granny…

8) …I realize that I have assignments due for my new program and a nice little bundle of paperwork as well, that I should have known about months ago… all due before my program began. Amidst my emotional state, I begin to have a meltdown in the middle of my *thankfully* private hostel room.

In this moment I truly thought my world was falling apart. The thoughts of how I was going to juggle preparing to leave, finances, Cultural Research Papers, packing, emotions, etc. felt like too much to carry. I soon realized that this feeling of “lost control” was because I wasn’t meant to carry these fears in the first place.

This moment was a call to surrender.

Until this moment, I had been desperately grasping for the control of something that the Lord was calling me to let Him handle. He was calling me to let God be God.

I wondered why it was so difficult to manage all of the details… why moment after moment was going wrong… and as everything fell from my grasp in one simple email, I just knew. I would be completely devoid of peace without Jesus, especially if I continued to hold tight to my way + run from His way.

In my dark place, my valley, the Lord has been my light and my comfort in many ways. Today I looked back at the past week and saw the depth of provision that seemed foreign before. Amidst prayer, the Study of Acts, refining moments, conversations that encourage me from my head to my toes, and cups of coffee warmed up like 4 times throughout the day before I finish them because I simply c a n n o t keep my head on straight… I have found peace. Peace in the art of surrender. He is holding me fast.

Thank you Lord for:

1) Granny. Wise and seasoned in the word of the Lord.

2) Friends and family full of support and advice.

3) Prayer. Always and everyday prayer.

4) Plenty of time to finish my assignments. (That I’m pretty dang proud of… not gonna lie.)

5) P E A C E in surrender.

6) Provision of friends and community even before departure. (We’ve already made plans to find a open air ‘mercado’ in Santiago and I’m getting so excited. Not to mention, 5 amigos from my program are on my 10 hour flight to Santiago. Praise Jesus for community!)

7) Comfort in the word NOT my own ideas and philosophies.

8) Time to prepare my heart the right way, in HIM, and always grace upon grace.

This is only the beginning of a long list of blessings that have come with God’s immense grace. I just had to write it all down in order to look back and say, “Wow! Time + time again, the Lord is ever faithful.”

Now onto try and pack a bit. I keep forgetting this trip is more than simply a week or two.. and I can’t wait until the last minute. Tips and prayers are always welcome!

“Blessed are those who dwell in your house; they are ever praising you.”

Psalm 84:4

I HAVE MY VISA! I may have forgotten that small detail.
My sweet Granny at the cutest little cupcake shop only a short walk from the Hostel.

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